It's 1947 and the borderlines between India and Pakistan are being drawn. A young girl witnesses tragedy as her ayah (nanny) is caught between the love of two men and the rising tide of political and religious violence.
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A story of love and enchantment set in the coldest of winters, it explores the issues, dilemmas and barriers facing the lucky and unlucky in love in the 21st Century, based on the novel of ... See full summary »
23-year-old Nikhil comes to Canada from India to find his fortune and is convinced by his uncle to work as a companion and care-giver to Sam, an elderly Jewish man. An unlikely friendship ensues, which gives both men new insight into life.
Midnight's Children, that mammoth book written by Salman Rushdie which all English Literature Undergraduates are forced to read and marvel at, finally gets a long-awaited film adaptation. Having read the book many years ago, I never imagined anybody would be bold enough to actually film the text, with all it's magical realism and grand sweeps through the course of history, so let's see how this goes...
Telling the story of Saleem, born on the stroke of Midnight on August 15th 1947 i.e when India finally became an independent nation, whose life is altered from the minute he is born, as he is given to the wrong parents, rich parents, and thus afforded a life of luxury that he was not destined to have. On top of that, he has magical powers (that aren't that great to be honest), and finds that every child born at Midnight on August 15th also has magic powers, it's like the Power Rangers: India. What thus follows is a story narrated by Rushdie himself, as Saleem's life links and progresses with the historical and political turmoil taking part in India throughout the century, ( Partitions, Civil Wars, States of Emergency), and Saleem, much like India at the time, struggles and battles to find out his own identity.
The film does well in scaling down the content of the novel, it's more of a drama with bits of comedy, than a grand epic or fantasy, and parts do feel rushed as the viewer is transported from year to year without any sense of anything really linking together, despite the valiant attempts of Rushdie narrating the whole story. However, it is still a film that does manage to vividly depict a fascinating period in history with lots of very visual scenes that leave a lasting impression, and more importantly, it links it all together with individual plights, to add that emotional intensity. So overall I'd still recommend it.
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